SBI, PNB hike interest rate on NRE term deposits

Mumbai, Dec 27 (IANS) State Bank of India (SBI), the country's largest lender, and Punjab National Bank (PNB) Tuesday said they would more than double interest rates on non-resident external (NRE) accounts to up to 9.25 percent - effective Jan 1, 2012.

SBI revises upwards the NRE term deposit rates up to 574 bps in all maturities, effective from Jan 1, 2012, the government-run lender said in a statement.

The State Bank of India said it would also hike the highest tenor for NRE term deposits to 10 years from the existing five years.

SBI's existing rate of interests on NRE term deposits is up to 3.82 percent. The lender has now brought the interest rates on NRE term deposits on par with the domestic term deposits.

In a separate statement the second-largest public sector lender Punjab National Bank said it would also hike the rates on NRE term deposits up to 9.25 percent.

The bank has decided to increase the rate of interests on NRE term deposit to 9.25 percent for period ranging from 1 year to 5 years with effect from Jan 1, 2012, PNB said in a statement.

Most other lenders have also hiked interest rates on NRE deposits.

Last week, HDFC Bank hiked interest rates on NRE deposits of various maturities period up to 9 percent.

Allahabad Bank has hiked rates to 7.5 percent. IndusInd Bank has hiked rates to 9.25 percent and Yes Bank hiked rates to 9.6 percent.

The existing interest rates on term deposits of most of the banks are in the range of 3-4 percent.

Lenders have hiked rates in a bid to attract deposits from NRIs amid rising interest rates on domestic deposits.